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What are "Eavestroughs”

In Canada, the term "eavestrough" is used interchangeably with "gutter" to describe the trough-like channels installed along the edges of roofs to collect and redirect rainwater—which are called gutters here in the United States.. While the word "gutter" is universally understood and commonly used in many parts of the world, Canadians have opted to be different – saying that “eavestrough” reflects both their linguistic heritage and architectural practices.


The term "eavestrough" is a blend of two words: "eaves" and "trough." "Eaves" refers to the part of a roof that overhangs the walls of a building, a term we use in the United States.  "Trough" describes a long, narrow container used to hold or convey something. By combining these words and terms, Canadians have crafted a word that they feel describes the function and location of the gutters.

Historical Context

To understand why Canadians use the term "eavestrough," we must look into the country's history and architectural traditions. Canada, with its diverse cultural influences, has often adopted linguistic conventions that reflect its British and French heritage.

The term "eavestrough" can be traced back to British architectural terminology, where the eaves of a building were considered integral to its design and functionality. As settlers from Britain arrived in Canada and began constructing homes, they brought with them not only their building techniques but also their vocabulary.  French-speaking Canadians also contributed to the linguistic landscape of the country. In French, the term for gutter is "gouttière." Both "eavestrough" and "gouttière" are used in Canada but most often “eavestrough” is.

Cultural Influence

Beyond its linguistic origins, the term "eavestrough" has become ingrained in Canadian culture and identity. Just as Canadians have embraced other unique linguistic expressions – such as "toque" for a winter hat or "loonie" for the one-dollar coin – the use of "eavestrough" reflects the country's distinctiveness from the United States.

The adoption of "eavestrough" over "gutter" serves as a subtle reminder of Canada's ties to its colonial past while also highlighting its independent identity and cultural evolution.

While the rest of the world may refer to their rain distribution system simply as "gutters," Canadians have chosen to put their spin on these essential components of home construction. The term "eavestrough" not only reflects Canada's linguistic heritage and architectural traditions but also embodies the country's unique cultural identity.

Here at Glen Cove Gutters, we take pride in serving our diverse clientele, whether they call them gutters or eavestroughs. No matter the name, we remain committed to providing top-quality installation and maintenance services to ensure that your home remains protected from the elements – whatever you choose to call it!

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